This season is one for the ages regarding Boston Bruins goaltending. Linus Ullmark has put together a Vezina Trophy-caliber season and is giving off 2010-11 Tim Thomas vibes. He has had a monster of a season and is a large part of the team’s success. However, his hugging partner, Jeremy Swayman, has put together quite a good season, despite living in Ullmark’s shadow.
Bruins Jeremy Swayman Quietly Having A Good Season
Swayman was a bright spot last season since the team’s transition from Tuukka Rask has not been easy. Moreover, it also has made the fans feel blessed that the goaltending position has never been a cause for concern. Last year, Swayman went 23-14-3 and posted a 2.41 goals-against average (GAA) and a .912 save percentage (SV%). In addition, Swayman finished with 4.2 goals saved above expected. He was sharp, and so was his counterpart, Ullmark. Together, the duo split time, with Swayman seeing some playoff action. In that seven-game series, he played in the final five of them, providing him with valuable experience. However, since he is young, there will be growing pains, although there is no need to panic regarding his development.
Swayman Exceeding Expectations in 2022-23
Swayman is quietly putting together a solid season. It appears to get lost in the weeds, given how good Ullmark has been, and rightfully so. In the beginning, he did not get off to the brightest start. During his first three starts, he allowed ten goals and finished the month of October with a brutal 3.76 GAA and a .872 SV%. Expectations for him were high, given how he played in the previous season, but to be fair, this is his second full season in the league. It is safe to say growing pains are bound to happen.
After a collision with Patrice Bergeron, he missed time with a lower-body injury. Luckily, he was not gone as long as it could be, but Ullmark shut the door in his absence. Upon his return, he has become a completely different goalie. Throughout the rest of November, he had one bad game against Florida but was solid the rest of the way.
Jim Montgomery has done a solid job with his goalie rotations. He has made sure that both goalies remain sharp and are seeing pucks thrown their way. December was a better month than October and produced a heavier workload. Swayman went 2-1-3 that month, but his numbers were slightly sharper, with a 2.75 GAA and .892 SV%. Furthermore, one area that genuinely improved was his play in the high-danger area. Swayman allowed eight goals and posted a .789 SV% in that area of the ice.
New Year, Elite Swayman
The new year has been kind to Swayman since he has become a brick wall in the net for the club. He has recently allowed no more than two goals in the last three games, including a shutout against the Philadelphia Flyers. He has a 1.00 GAA and a .966 SV% in those three starts. He has been sharper in the high-danger area, posting a .947 high-danger SV%, with only one goal against. Thanks to his improved play, both goalies give the team a chance to win.
Swayman Is Doing Just Fine
If there was ever a cause for concern with Swayman, there shouldn’t be. He has gotten better as the season has gone on and, impressively enough, has solid numbers to go with it. Currently, he is 10-3-3 and has a 2.35 GAA and a .912 SV%. Swayman is lightyears behind Ullmark in these statistics, but he still owns 7.5 goals saved above expected (good for 11th in the league). Once again, growing pains will always come with younger players, but Swayman is showing he is working through them.